Trials of The Blood Dragon 2LP Vinyl Impressions

Published On August 20, 2018 | By Justin Ortiz-Burrow | Features, News

We’ve seen a huge influx in vinyl releases of video game scores over the past few years and with good reason. Games have some of the most moving and creative musical tracks of any medium. But setting the mood, matching the gameplay, and enhancing every aspect of the overall game is no easy task for composers.

As with any sort of product though, some are higher quality than others. Sadly this seems to especially prominent with the vinyl market. Some releases are insanely overpriced and lack the fidelity customers should expect with these expensive pressings, taking advantage of gamer’s passion in exchange for obscenely priced releases. Luckily, today’s release is easily one of the nicest and fairly priced records I’ve ever had the pleasure of spinning.

If you’re familiar with the Blood Dragon series you’ll no doubt expect a neon-soaked, synth-filled 1980s action soundtrack and Power Glove does not disappoint. The Australian sythnwave duo are back with a vengeance with this follow-up from the highly acclaimed soundtrack to the original Far Cry: Blood Dragon release.

Each track conjures up visuals of fire-fights with cyborgs and ninjas in a Miami night club. The beats are fast, the bass heavy, and the nostalgia as abundant as the amount of yayo on the bathroom floor. If you’re a fan of the highly regarded Hotline Miami soundtrack, you’ll feel right at home blasting this record as well.

Featuring thirty-one all new tracks from the artist, each track is brimming with extreme arpeggios, hard-hitting synths, and even dabbles in the occasional touch of house style music. It was a pleasant surprise to see the album even included a fantastic remix of Carpenter Brut’s ‘Roller Mobster‘. It’s a great ride of thumping tones, bass, and 80’s aesthetic that any fan of the genre is sure to appreciate.

The vinyl itself is a neon pink retrowave dream. It’s easily the brightest pink record I’ve ever seen; more vibrant than even the Drive soundtrack release, and that’s saying something. The 180g LP gives off a fantastic glow especially when spinning on a clear acrylic platter. Adding to the themes and nostalgia, the flip side of each record features a label that resembles the classic clear center of a compact disc. I found this to be a nice little touch that is not only unique but also somewhat ironic.

The sleeve is a thick, high-quality print with a glossy finish. While I would have preferred a matte finish and a fold gate, it’s still presented in a wonderfully printed package. The release includes an insert sheet with all the fictitious movie poster featured in the game. A great touch as I was a huge fan of this art and I don’t know anyone who wouldn’t love these in a larger form. Each record in housed in a high-end protective sleeve with plastic coating around the label areas. This is a definite plus, as with cheaper releases you’re left with only a paper sleeve and an unprotected hole.

Overall Invada Records has produced a wonderfully high quality release with a very affordable £22.99/$29.00 price tag. While their current video game soundtrack library isn’t the largest, I really hope they expand their releases in the future as I found it to be one of the best pressings I’ve experienced. If you’re a fan of the 80’s, or of course Trials of The Blood Dragon itself, you should give this release a go. You won’t be disappointed.

Thanks again to Invada Records for sending me what is now one of my favorite records. If you’d like to get your own, head over to the Invada store!

If you’d like to see more video game vinyl reviews, please let us know!

 

 

NOTE: This 33 ⅓  RPM, 180g, 12″ colored vinyl was played on a U-Turn Orbit Custom turntable with an acrylic platter, built-in preamp, Audio-Technica CN5625AL cartridge with conical diamond stylus, and anti-skate counterweight.

About The Author

Introduced to video games when he was only five, after dying somewhere around four thousand times while playing Star Tropics, he never looked back. Some of his favorites range from titles like Shenmue and Metal Gear Solid 3 to Half-Life 2, Manhunt, and the Dark Souls series. Justin has a passion for vinyl records, and loves to collect video game memorabilia. If he had one wish, it would be to travel back to 1984 Miami.